By Caleb Bell
Like many others that I have spoken with recently, I cannot believe that 2023 is coming to a close and 2024 is beginning. When I was younger, people would say things like ‘time goes faster the older you get’. In my naiveté, I would simply ignore the sentiment. I can now see where they were coming from.
As I have talked more with others recently, I have heard that it now appears to be passing even more quickly. It seems most people credit this shift to our “changing times” with its faster pace of life, digital dependency, and hectic schedules. And honestly, I tend to agree. If you find yourself in that same camp, here is what I suggest: come visit the Tyler Museum of Art today.
The TMA is a place of respite and wonder. With captivating exhibitions hanging on the walls of a welcoming space, it is the perfect place to come slow down and relax. There is something special about getting to experience the creations of others, offering unique takes on the world around us. Not to mention, standing with a work of art in real life and getting to examine the brushwork and mark making creates a deeper appreciation for a piece. With all of the things we as a society consume on screens, it is a nice escape from the blue glow and a beautiful return to reality.
Our programming also allows for genuine connectivity. From hearing directly from artists and authors to guided tours on First Friday, true relationships are forged. Plus, our monthly Family Day provides hands-on art activities related to the exhibitions. The tactile nature of creating their own works of art opens the eyes of younger visitors to understand what it takes for artists to produce the works in the galleries. None of this could happen via Zoom.
The aforementioned is just the tip of the iceberg. With a TMA Membership, you can enjoy all of that and much more throughout the year. Members are also invited to Preview Receptions which provide another opportunity to interact with others while enjoying art, snacks, and live music.
If you have not been to the TMA recently, we currently have A Pop of Color: Works by Jeffie Brewer on view through Sunday, January 7, 2024. The Nacogdoches-based artist’s exhibition features sculptures of varying sizes along with paintings on paper.
As the title suggests, the work packs a punch of color. Known for his stylized approach, Brewer presents recognizable subjects in a new light – refined and simplified. Fun for all, the exhibition is especially great for young museumgoers.
In the other gallery, The Way I See It: Works by Cindi Holt and Susie Phillips opens to the public on Friday, December 15.
Bringing the work of the two Dallas-Fort Worth artists together, the exhibition presents their distinctive perspectives on everyday objects and spaces. With flattened planes and bold patterning, the featured works draw inspiration from interiors as well as the great outdoors. These interpretations are created across a variety of media including collages, embroideries, and paintings.
In 2024, we have a lot of wonderful things lined up. I can assure you, you will not want to miss a thing. We start the year with the opening of The Artistic Legacy of Buck Schiwetz. Organized by Texas A&M University Press and accompanied by an illustrated catalog, the exhibition provides an overview of the late Texas artist’s career. The exhibition will be on view from Friday, January 19 through Sunday, April 14, 2024.
To expand the conversation around The Way I See It and The Artistic Legacy of Buck Schiwetz, there will be a series of artist and author talks. Plus, we will be hosting our monthly Family Days and First Friday Tours, which both offer free admission to the galleries.
2024 also marks the launch of several new programs including an art book club, artist demonstrations, musical performances, and film screenings.
Speaking of new and exciting things, our reimagined TMA Gift Shop has opened and is offering merch by Brewer until the end of his show. If you have enjoyed A Pop of Color, you can take home something to remember it by. We have some other great things planned for the TMA Gift Shop in 2024, but more on that to come later.
Don’t forget about the TMA Café. Offering a variety of sandwiches, salads, and soup, it is a great spot to enjoy lunch. It is open Tuesday through Friday from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.
To be the first to know about all things TMA and support our programs, consider becoming a TMA Member. Memberships start at $75 per year and include all kinds of great benefits. TMA Members receive free admission to all exhibitions, invitations to preview receptions, a discount in the TMA Café, and many more perks.
The TMA is a proud member of the North American Reciprocal Museum Association (NARM). By supporting your local museum and being a member, you are entitled to free or discounted admission to hundreds of museums across the U.S. and Canada. A list of participating locations can be found at www.narmassociation.org. A full list of benefits can be found on the museum’s website. For more information on becoming a TMA Member, visit www.tylermuseum.org or call 903-595-1001.
General museum admission is $5 for adults and $3 for senior citizens. TMA Members, students, children under 12, TJC faculty and staff, and City of Tyler employees are admitted free. To stay up to date with special events and educational programs, follow us on Facebook and Instagram.